Codes for Reviews

First Initial (Overall Rating):
E = Exceptional
VG = Very Good
G = Good
F = Fair
NR = Not Recommended

Second Initital (Reading Level):
A = Average Reading Level
E = Easy
M = Mature

“The views expressed are of individuals and do not necessarily reflect the views of their respective institutions.”

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Take What You Can Carry

Adult/Young Adult Graphic Novel

F/A Pyle, Kevin C.  Take What You Can Carry.  Henry Holt, 2012.  176p.  978-0-8050-8286-9.  12.99.

This graphic novel is composed of two stories told in alternating chapters that eventually connect. The first story is completely wordless and sepia toned. It is set in California during the Japanese internment in the 1940s and follows a family, as they are torn apart and relocated twice. The teenage son feels particularly lost during the turmoil. The second story is blue colored and set outside of Chicago in 1978. It follows a teenage boy who is new in town and out of boredom steals from a convenience store. He is caught and must work at the store to repay what he has stolen. Here we discover that the owner of the store is none other than the teenage son from the alternate story. The artwork is good (although several characters look very alike and are hard to differentiate) and the wordless Japanese internment story is powerful, but the relationship between the storeowner and the teenage boy feels contrived. Although they may have some similarities, they have nothing in common. Loren Spector, LAPL, Felipe de Neve

Steve Jobs: The Man Who Thought Different

Young Adult Non-Fiction

G/A  Blumenthal, Karen.  Steve Jobs: The Man Who Thought Different.  Feiwel, 2012.  310p.  978-1-250-01557-0.  16.99.

This Steve Jobs biography is a great resource for both teens and adults who are not quite ready (or willing) to tackle the 630page Walter Isaacson biography. It clearly doesn’t go into as much detail, but still gives the reader plenty of information about Jobs’ personal life and career. This biography specifically written for teens is much better quality than the majority of teen biography series available, both in the writing style and its’ high interest topic. It includes photos, a timeline, glossary, index and extended bibliography. Loren Spector, LAPL, Felipe de Neve

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Lions of Little Rock

General YA Historical Fiction

VG/A. Levine, Kristin. The Lions of Little Rock. G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2012. 304 p. 9780399256448 $16.99

This book takes place the year after the Little Rock Nine integrated the city's high schools when Little Rock decided to close the high schools down rather than continue with integration.

Marlee is a quiet girl with few friends. Her best friend and confidante is her older sister Judy who encourages her to speak up in school. When she partners up with the new girl, Liz, for an oral presentation, Marlee starts to come out of her shell. Then the unthinkable happens:  Judy is sent away to stay with her grandmother and continue school and Liz turns out to be a colored girl who is passing for white. Will Marlee learn to speak up by herself?

Sarah Mae Harper, CoLAPL-AC Bilbrew Library